While JC students in Raffles Institution are enjoying their 4-day week since 2021, MOM is encouraging employers to give a 4-Day workweek with flexible work arrangements.
Now, we know the difference between “enjoy” and “encourage”, but one can always dream, right?
During yesterday’s Parliament Sitting (13 Sept), Minister of State for Manpower, Gan Siow Huang, said in response to queries about 4-day workweek studies in Singapore, “The ministry, together with our tripartite partners, strongly encourages employers and employees to be open to flexible work arrangements in all their various forms to identify and adopt those that best suit their unique business needs and the workers’ needs.”
No Studies Conducted so Far on the Feasibility of a Four-Day Work Week in Singapore
Member of Parliament of Radin Mas, Mr Melvin Yong, had asked Ms Gan if there are any studies in Singapore to examine the feasibility of a four-day work week in Singapore.
Additionally, he also asked if the Ministry of Manpower would be open to conducting a small-scale trial to gauge the benefits and challenges of a four-day work week.
Ms Gan replied that MOM does not intend to conduct any trial or impose formulas on the public sector.
Mixed Opinions Regarding This Arrangement
A 4-day work week sounds shiok as you can finally get more sleep after staying up to watch your K-Drama or football the night before.
However, some people might not feel this way. Watch this video to find out why:
Ms Gan said that reduced working hours would mean that employers might need to hire more labour.
Employees are also worried that their salaries would be cut down due to working lesser hours.
Some might also feel stressed if they need to work more hours than usual to complete their daily work.
They deserve a prize for being so hardworking and dedicated.
4-Day Workweek in Other Countries
There are reports of four-day work-week pilots in countries like Ireland, Japan, and Spain.
Countries like Belgium allow employees to ask for a four-day work week but with longer working hours per day such that the total number of hours worked is the same.
In certain studies, it’s proven that workers are apparently more productive after switching to a four-day workweek.
I hope my boss is reading this.
A Hybrid Working Model Also Boosts Psychological Well-being
A recent study showed that workers have better psychological well-being when their current workplace arrangements matched their preferred work arrangements.
For example, working parents with young children expressed the lowest levels of well-being when their work required them to return to their office.
Between 41 and 52 per cent of workers feel that flexible work arrangements should be the new norm for workplaces in Singapore.
Employers and Staff are Welcome to Try Out which Working Arrangement Best Suits Them
Ms Gan stated that various sectors have different needs. Hence, employers and workers are welcome to try different types of flexible arrangements that best suit their workplace.
To all the bosses out there, this is a win-win situation, right? Happy employees would also mean their productivity and motivation levels would increase.
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